Writing your own memoirs, or an exciting thriller story is fun, right?
No matter the industry, when we work with something we like, we do get better results, meet our deadlines, and we do not feel exhausted throughout the process.
Writing about anything you love to write about is great. But what happens when you have to cover stories, or develop content for subjects you have no idea about, or even hate?
Most writers that decide to work in the content industry will, at some point, have to write about something they don’t care about.
There are some tricks and tips we can use as writers to overcome the struggle of a difficult or unwanted subject.
After speaking with many writers we have compiled a list of the tips they were willing to share.
We are omitting to expand on tips such as ‘drink a bit more wine’ and the content will flow.
We leave that up to your discretion. So let’s get down to the tips.
If you do not like the topic there is a good chance you never took the time to look into it.
Therefore, the first thing you need to do is research, gather information and see what kind of spin you want to put on it.
Let’s assume you generally like to write about fashion and makeup, it can be difficult to make the switch to writing something medical or legal.
However, think of yourself as a detective. You are now after information and research to help you do your job as good as possible.
Once you immerse yourself in research, it becomes less difficult and you might even enjoy learning about something new.
Remember ‘variety is the spice of life’.
2. Fake it Until You Make it
Pretend long enough that you are “it” and you become it. There is no new information here, but “pretending” is something many of us do in different occasions. It is ok, just make sure you do it well.
Let me demonstrate how you can use this method to optimize any situation you are not the best fit for.
Let’s assume that you were asked to go hiking, and you hate hiking and all other outdoors activities.
But you have to do it! It is a matter of honoring your word, or keeping your job etc.
Well, you might as well go out there, smell the flowers, take some amazing pictures and breathe in some fresh air.
In other words, every experience has something to offer and teach you. Keeping this in mind, it is much easier to focus and go on and finish a task that you do not relate to.
3. Repeat Repeat Repeat
Make a point to sometimes take on projects that you’re not too keen on. It will help keep your mind “sharp”.
The more you cover projects that are not your cup of tea, your research skills will improve and you will discover new and exciting things to write about.
Think of the possible opportunity to interact with people (maybe if you have to perform an interview) that you have never met before.
Sometimes “hating” something is just an excuse to avoid learning more about it.
And when we do, wonderful things can happen.
4. Build a Story
Listing facts about cars is not going to be exciting for you or anyone, especially if you are not a car person.
Instead, imagine telling the story of this car, the many people that bought and sold it, the reasons, the trips, the romances and the stories told within it.
People relate to stories, we grew up listening to stories, and we are stories ourselves.
So find the story in your subjects and go with it.
5. Find the Golden Nugget
All subjects have that one compelling thing, that people can’t wait to read about.
Your great grandmother’s recipe for pasta has that one thing in its story, your friend’s stamp collection has an interesting sequence of events, and even the boring banker who lives next door is hiding a secret.
To find that golden nugget, ask “why”.
Why did your grandmother passed down this recipe to the next generation?
Why did your friend begin collecting stamps?
Why is the boring banker so secretive?
Every why you ask peels off the layers and takes you into the heart of the story. That is what your audience really cares about.
6. Assume a Different Personality
For the sake of this one article that you hate, assume the personality of someone else.
It’s like acting!
We all love an opportunity to act, be someone else for a change, and see this subject through those eyes.
Let’s say you have to write an article about insects in a particular region of the world. Research as much as you can, and then assume you are from there. Write the article as if you are a local.
Maybe insects are not a disgusting annoyance?
Maybe there they are considered protein, as in food?
7. What’s in it for my Audience?
This is generally good advice for writing about subjects you love or subjects you hate.
Every article has an objective, right?
It is either selling a new product or service, or sometimes an idea.
Ask yourself what are the benefits your audience will get from the subject you are covering and focus on that.
What is so innovating about this product or service you are covering?
What can the readers learn from this story you just covered?
This is similar to the Golden Nugget suggestion.
Remember every story has its audience and most of the time, it is not the story itself but the narrator who makes all the difference.